Firefox won't start.

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  • Updated 2 years ago
and now firefox crashed...permanently apparently. it wont restart at all. whiskey tango foxtrot
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Josh (myles7897)

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Posted 7 years ago

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Josh (myles7897)

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Hi my name is Josh (:myles7897), I volunteer giving support at Live Chat, http://support.mozilla.com/chat.

If Firefox will not open try safe mode. Safe Mode is a special way of running Firefox that temporarily disables extensions, themes and toolbar changes. If your problem stops while in this mode, we can find the item that is causing the trouble.
Full safe mode instructions are at http://support.mozilla.com/kb/Safe+Mode.

If that doesn't help see this article, http://support.mozilla.com/kb/Firefox...
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f that doesn't help see this article, http://support.mozilla.com/kb/Firefox...
That's a horrible link......it's titled 'Firefox won't start' but it doesn't address the issue of NOT STARTING AT ALL! It gives options for error messages. Firefox SUCKS!!!
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Thomas

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NONE, please read the rest of the thread, including the part about how it might be a virus blocking Firefox.exe: http://getsatisfaction.com/mozilla/to...
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Sorry I can't assist. I started experiencing the same problem after using 3.0.1 for a couple of days. Can't start ff in safe mode, profile mode, any mode. Deleted everything (directories, files, profiles, etc...), uninstalled twice, no change. Used the restore point function of XP to go back to a known time when everything was working with 3.0.1 - still no use.
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Exactly same issues with me on both my laptop and desktop computers running XP. Firefox used to work on both. Have uninstalled and reinstalled latest version numerous times, plus every other fix I've seen. Nothing works!
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I had the same problem. I tried deleting all my profiles and plugins and it still didn't work I deleted and reinstalled firefox multiple times and still nothing. I even tried installing to a different directory and it still didn't work. I finaly got it to work by renaming the exe file in the mozilla folder from firefox.exe to firefox3.exe.
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Thomas

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You should run a virus scan, if renaming the executable works then something is looking to stop firefox.exe itself from running, it sounds like. Put a copy of Notepad (it's in C:\windows\system32\notepad.exe) on the desktop and rename it to firefox.exe. Not a shortcut, not a move, a copy. See if it runs.
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I have been trying to fix this for days now --- really getting to the point of throwing my laptop through the window. But this SIMPLE fix (changing the firefox.exe file name) did the trick!! Wish I hadn't already deleted my old profile :(
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Thomas

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nikuman: you have a serious virus that's stopping Firefox.exe from running. Changing the name isn't the solution.
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missaldrete

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I have this same problem and I tried the notepad trick. It still opened just fine. Any ideas?
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I uninstalled and reinstalled an older version (2.0.0.16) and Firefox starts every time and works fine! Took me a long time to figure this out by myself. Wish someone had have suggested this easy fix a long time ago!
Mozilla won't provide older versions, so here's the link.......pick any version older than 3.0 and you should be OK.
http://www.oldapps.com/firefox.htm
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Thomas

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Please don't link to insecure versions of Firefox, and why would you claim "Mozilla won't provide older versions" when there's another thread here titled Where can I download Firefox 2?, and you can see it has been answered with a link to the official page to download Firefox 2. Firefox 2.0.0.17 is out, the only changes are security fixes against the 2.0 branch.

If someone accidentally downloaded Firefox from that oldapps.com site, I suggest running an antivirus. Sites which offer downloads like that are hit and miss with legitimacy, and I've heard of cases where similar sites (not necessarily the exact same site) provide infected installers.

As well, Rob, it seems the problem was not with Firefox 3 but with the name of the executable, as something is preventing firefox.exe from starting. Firefox 2 is also named firefox.exe, so it would probably not start either.
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FWIW, I ended up installing an older version of FF, and it worked. I had tried everything with FF 3, including renaming the exe file. It wouldn't even uninstall. Now, FF 2.0.0.17 seems to be working great. (I did download it from the official site, and I ALWAYS scan any exe file before executing.)
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Thomas,

I have a very similar problem to the items above. Firefox would not start in safemode in either version 2 or version 3, with or without profile changes or creations. I scoured the internet and ran across the suggestion above for renaming firefox.

After renaming firefox, it ran without issue. I copied the notepad.exe to the desktop and attempted running that. Sure enough Notepad.exe either fails to load, or gets shutdown within 3 seconds. Clearly there is something on my computer targeting a specific named process and shutting it down.

I use SpyBot Search & Destory, McAffee, & MalwareBytes to detect, prevent, and eliminate malware and viruses. SpyBot detects a Smitfraud-c variant in my windows svchost.exe file. Malware agrees that svchost has an issue, but none of the programs have been able to remove the item.

I know this is not a mozilla issue, but do you know of anything that can facilitate the resolution of this issue, as it appears something is targeting the firefox process.

Jeremy
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Thomas

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http://housecall.trendmicro.com/ <-- run this in Internet Explorer, see if it helps
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Thomas,

Thanks for the help. It turns out there was another trojan on my computer overlooked by McAffee, SpyBot, & MalwareBytes. The trojan is gone, and Firefox can run under the real name again.

Still have the smitfraud-c variant showing, but I should be able to get that resolved easily enough.

Thanks again for the help.

Jeremy
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Thomas

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What was the name of the problematic trojan so I can make a note?
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a variant of TSPY_ONLINEG
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tatman

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Jeremy, would you please share what tool you end up using to detect & clean the TSPY_ONLINEG variant and the Smitfraud-c variant? It's been months since you wrote this but yet I am still experiencing the same problem. It's hard to believe the anti-virus (AVAST) that I use still can't detect and clean this.
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Thanks for the renaming tip for firefox.exe to firefox3.exe. I tried it and it worked! Previously I'd tried version 2 and the 3 beta, tried Safe mode, uninstalled and renstalled, tried system restore and THAT wouldn't work either. But this worked!!! I like FF much better than IE, but was having to "struggle along". I think the suggestion that some sort of virus or malware has gotten into the system is probably right, as I've had a number of strane things lately. I have a good anti-virus and malware detector, run scans often, including ones by Windows Defender...so am unsure of how to *really* and permanently get things correct. Meanwhile, at least I can open FF again, and happily, when I uninstalled it, I ddid NOT tell it to remove my personal info and settings, so it picked right up as it should.
CharlieSimmons@inbox.com
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Charlie, Just got back into town. It has been a really long time since I had this issue, and I would assume as well that most anti-virus programs would have started to pick up on the specific virus that affected me. It is possible another similar virus or variant has crept in to your system with similar effects. However, the specific way I got rid of my virus was to use multiple virus scanners (Trend Micro has a good online scan which finally caught the variant for me).
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Charlie, Just got back into town. It has been a really long time since I had this issue, and I would assume as well that most anti-virus programs would have started to pick up on the specific virus that affected me. It is possible another similar virus or variant has crept in to your system with similar effects. However, the specific way I got rid of my virus was to use multiple virus scanners (Trend Micro has a good online scan which finally caught the variant for me).
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I Have a similar issue, my firefox won't open after I've closed it. I have to restart the system to get it up again, even though IE will work. But when I went to run trend micro in IE, it keeps on saying that I don't have java (even though I do and it's enabled) and then it just is stuck -- the bar says Idle. Is there another program to try? I have Nod 32, Zone Alarm, and Spybot. I used to have Adaware, but, believe it or not, Nod found something in that, so I deleted it.
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Thomas

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You should probably uninstall Java, and then reinstall it from java.com.
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I tried that today, but it didn't detect anything. At first trend micro was saying that it had encountered a problem and the information to my laptop had to be resent, and then when I exited the page and tried again it said nothing was found.
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Thomas

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I don't understand, you tried uninstalling Java, but the uninstaller didn't detect Java?
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No, sorry for the confusion. I uninstalled java and then went to the trend micro site where they installed the java. Then when I clicked on housecall it said that it has to download some info onto your computer, then it said that it had encountered a problem and the info had to be resent, it did this so many times that I finally selected quit. Then when I exited the page and returned it ran the scan and said it found nothing.
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Carson

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This problem just occured on my machine today.

Firefox:
- wouldn't open from any shortcut
- won't open in safe mode
- wouldn't work after restart
- wouldn't work after reinstall
- notepad.exe renamed to firefox.exe on desktop and notepad launched.

This makes me think that it's not a trojan preventing firefox from opening.

Any more ideas?
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Carson

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It's probably Microsoft hatin' on Firefox...haha
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missaldrete

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I have this exact problem...please help!
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Tracey Lauriault

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it opens in safe mode, so now what?
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Ditto on this problem. Renaming doesn't work. Usually have to reboot. Funny thing is that firefox.exe shows up in the task manager. This sux
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niss63

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Firefox 3.5.2 will not start. The only way I can use FF is to go back to version 3.0.13. All personal files and add-ins remain the same. All I get is:

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Rajesh

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HI I am facing the same error after upgrading the new Firefox.so now i cant start any Firefox .I have tried to reinstall but it not work..My id is rajrnp@rediffmail.com
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Rajesh

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HI I am facing the same error after upgrading the new Firefox.so now i cant start any Firefox .I have tried to reinstall but it not work..My id is rajrnp@rediffmail.com
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Micah

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Last night while using firefox I was prompted to download the new version of firefox. Of course, like I had probably 100 times before, I said ok. After downloading, firefox crashed, and since then I have not been able to use firefox or internet explorer. I can use Safari, don't know how though. I downloaded spybot to destroy any viruses I had, and it did, but still no go. I can't even uninstall explorer and firefox to reinstall them, it simply doesn't let me. All I get when clicking on explorer or firefox is the hourglass for like 2 seconds and then nothing. Help please.
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Kevin

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I have similar problems. I recently updated to the latest version and now FF won't start at all. I get the hourglass for about 1/2 second and that is it. I tried renaming the exe file but still nothing.

Thomas, I copied the notepad to desktop, renamed and it opened, so I suppose I don't have anything targeting the firefox.exe file. I also ran my spyware and anti virus programs but came up dry.

Now here's the strange thing. I switched users in XP and everything works on the other profile. I am on it right now as I type. I clicked Help>About Mozilla Firefox, and sure enough, it shows up as version 3.5.2.

How can it run on one profile and not the other??
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Kevin

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Well I went ahead and reverted back to version 3.0.13 and BINGO! Works on my profile again.

For some reason I can't get IE to work for over a year now, but it too works if I switch users. Any sugestions to fix that? Also, in my profile I have tons of stuff running in the task manager, but very few in the other profile. Anyone know how to clean that up? I know some of it is part of the OS and can't be closed. I keep my startup programs down to a minimum with C Cleaner, so I don't know why all that would be running.

Any help is GREATLY appreciated!

Thanks
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niss63

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I've removed dot net add-in from FF, went registry diving and deleted the dot net registry entry in the FF add-in folder; still no go with 3.5.2. When 3.5.2 is installed, the registry folders do not retain any personal profile settings. When I re-install 3.0.13, all personal settings are retained and FF works.

This is really broke. I'm surprised at the lack of response from FF support. Both here and in the mozilla help forums.
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David Mansfield

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Windows XP. FF 3.5.2 is usually starting the first time I try it. But (usually but not every time) when I close it and try to open it again, or try to open it a second time with the first instance still running, nothing happens. I don't freeze or anything, but have to restart to get FF to work again. I thought this might be related to a recent problem I had installing an HP printer, but after reading this thread looks like it might actually be a FF problem. I'd say at least 90% of the time, I can open FF only once. After that, forget it. Restart is required if I want to use FF again.
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AK

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I've fixed the non-starting problem several times (only happens on my Win2000 pc, but could be the same problem others are having). First time I had the problem I spent nearly a day searching the net and couldn't find a fix. I finally examined the firefox directory and saw what the problem was and figured out how to fix it. Don't know why Mozilla doesn't do this fix automatically because it's not that complicated.

If the other fixes listed here don't work then you can try this.

A. FireFox (FF) won't start if there isn't enough space on the C drive. I don't know how much space it needs, but if there isn't enough it won't start and it won't tell you what the problem is. If you have less than 1GB then free up some space and try again.

B. FF sometimes crashes after trying to automatically update itself, and after that it won't start, and doesn't display an error message. Instructions below tell you how to fix it.

Firstly, it *really* helps if you have a proper filemanager like Total Commander (TC), and my instructions assume you do (you can download and use it for free - google). Follow the instructions CAREFULLY because TC assumes you know enough to not screw things up (it's aimed at power users). It's probably a good idea to read through all the instructions first before you try anything.

1. If necessary download TC and install it.

2. Restart your pc, start TC, and don't start anything else before you start doing the fix. It's a good idea to wait 2 or 3 minutes until your pc has finished all its startup stuff before you start TC.

3. In TC go to c:\Program Files\Mozilla Firefox\ (select a panel, e.g. the left panel, double-click the "Program Files" folder, scroll down to the "Mozilla Firefox" folder and double-click the "Mozilla Firefox" folder. You'll know you're in the Mozilla Firefox folder if you see "c:\Program Files\Mozilla Firefox\*.*" in the title area immediately above the list of filenames, and you should see for instance one of the top folders inside the Mozilla Firefox folder is the "chrome" folder.

4. Files are listed by name and extension. Check if there are any files with extension ".moz-backup" (you can click a file and press Ctrl-Enter to copy the filename to the command line box at the bottom, and then you can see the full name and extension, or you can drag the right-edge of the Ext tab to the right to reveal more of the extension).

5. IF (and only if) you see the ".moz-backup" extension then you can proceed with the rest of these instructions. This is an indication that the problem is due to a faulty update.

6. Press Alt-F7 to bring up TC's "Find Files" search window (while you're still in the folder "c:\Program Files\Mozilla Firefox\").

7. Enter "*.moz-backup" (asterisk+dot+moz-backup, without the quotes) in the Search for: text box. Don't start the search yet!

8. Click the Advanced tab at the top of the search window.

9. Click the checkbox next to "Not older than", change the "1" to a "2" in the text box, and change the "day(s)" option to "week(s)" in the drop-down list. I'm assuming your FF tried to do an update in the last 2 weeks. Don't go back too far because you can cause problems.

10. Click the "Start search" button. It will list all the files it finds with the ".moz-backup" extension in the Search results panel. In my experience it normally finds between 20 and 60 files.

11. Click the "Feed to listbox" button at the bottom of the Search results panel. This will list all the found files in one of the file panels (left or right, depending on which one you started with).

12. Press the "*" (asterisk) button on the numeric keypad to mark all the files. The filenames should change colour to show you they're marked. If you're using a laptop that doesn't have a numeric keyboard then you can right-click each file to mark it, or you can right-click the first file and while holding down the right mouse button you drag over the remaining files to mark all of them. Alternatively you can click the toolbar button that does the same thing (I seem to remember it's part of the standard install). Make sure all the listed files are marked, e.g. if you have 42 files listed then you should see 42 / 42 at the bottom of the panel which means 42 of the 42 files are marked (it would have shown 0 / 42 before the mark).

13. Press F6 to bring up TC's "Rename/Move" window.

14. This part is critical so do this *exactly* as follows. The top textbox in the Rename/Move window lists the folder in the opposite panel (don't worry if that doesn't make sense). Click in the textbox and delete everything that's there.

15. When it's empty (make very sure there's NOTHING in the textbox) enter "*." (asterisk+dot) and click the OK button. This is an old DOS trick. What it will do is rename all the marked files by removing the extension (i.e. it's changing a file from *.* to *. so it's removing the extension). In this case all the files that are marked have the ".moz-backup" extension (because that's what you searched for), so a file like "sqlite3.dll.moz-backup" will be renamed to "sqlite3.dll" (everything after the last dot is the extension).

16. After clicking the OK button TC will show a warning (if it doesn't then you did something wrong). The warning is that you're trying to overwrite an existing file with another file (e.g. you're trying to overwrite "sqlite3.dll" with "sqlite3.dll.moz-backup" which is now being renamed to "sqlite3.dll"). This is exactly what you're wanting to do, so click the "Overwrite all" button to do this with all the marked files. It will now go through all the marked files and rename them back to their original file names, overwriting the new update files with the original files.

17. Press Ctrl-PgUp to return to the c:\Program Files\Mozilla Firefox\ directory in TC.

18. Start FireFox. My FF takes a few minutes to start up because of all the plugins. Don't try starting FF more than once because that will also cause a problem, give it a minute or two to start up.

19. If the problem was because of a failed update attempt, then the update will need to be done again.

BTW the reason you don't want to go too far back searching for the moz-backup files is because there may be legitimate backup files from much older updates, and if you rename those back to their original names you'll have a FF installation with files from older versions, which could cause major problems.

Hope this is useful for somebody.
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mikesierra

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I had the same problem but I fixed it by deleting all my user information when I uninstalled firefox. I tried uninstalling without deleting this information, but it didn't work. I believe that the problem lies within that I had bad RAM in my computer when I had last ran firefox which caused the computer to crash. I believe firefox was attempting to restore my last session but somehow conflicted with the machine with new RAM installed. I don't know how to fix this manually, but uninstalling everything worked for me.
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Erik Ch

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Is this a problem to sunbird ?
This is a problem only for Firefox!
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subzmail

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me 3 SUCKS!